Lyft is one of the great inventions of the smartphone age—a service that allows you to hail a ride from anywhere by just using your phone. When we get into a Lyft, we expect that our driver will be professional and drive safely. While the vast majority of Lyft drivers are perfectly good drivers, even the best drivers can get into accidents sometimes. That’s why you should always be prepared and know what to do if your Lyft driver gets into an accident while you are in the car.
Below, we’ll look at a few common causes of all car accidents (including Lyft accidents), and go over a few things to think about if you are considering hiring an attorney after a Lyft accident.
Common Causes of Accidents
There are more ways to get into an accident than we could possibly count, but we do see a few more than others. Some of the most common reasons why Lyft drivers get into accidents include:
- Distracted driving: Distracted driving has been the leading cause of car accidents for several decades, and it becomes easier to get distracted all the time. Your driver may be fiddling with the Lyft app on his phone, trying to find a better radio station, or maybe just lost in thought.
- Drunk driving: While you expect that your Lyft driver will be sober when he picks you up (after all, avoiding drunk driving is one of the main reasons many people use Lyft), this is not always the case. In fact, regulators have accused rival ridesharing service Uber of ignoring reports made to them about drivers who appeared to be under the influence when they picked up passengers. We all know the dangers of drunk driving, and those dangers do not become any less acute for Lyft drivers.
- Speeding: We’re all guilty of speeding at one point or another. After all, sometimes it is difficult to maintain the posted speed limit, especially if that speed limit seems unreasonably low. However, speeding can cause accidents because it decreases the amount of time your driver has to react to conditions on the road.
- Reckless driving: Again, Lyft drivers are not perfect. They are ordinary human beings who sometimes may engage in less-than-stellar driving practices. Whether it’s tailgating, changing lanes too quickly, or acting generally aggressive, reckless driving often leads to accidents.
- Night driving: Lyft usage is much higher at night since many people utilize the service as a safe way to get around town if they are planning on having a few drinks. However, the lack of visibility at night makes it more difficult to see and, unfortunately, to get into an accident.
Where are Lyft Accidents Most Likely to Happen?
As you might already know, you are most likely to get into a car accident within just 25 miles of home. While this is due to the fact that most driving occurs close to home, the relaxation we feel caused by the repetition of driving through our own neighborhood likely plays a role. But if you’re in a Lyft, those rules don’t apply to your driver, since he or she probably doesn’t live in your neighborhood. Even if you’re much farther away from home than 25 miles, below are a few places where accidents are most likely to happen:
- Intersections: As the location where two directions of traffic come together, intersections are natural places for car accidents. This is especially true if the intersection is unregulated or only has a stop or yield sign to regulate traffic flow. Because intersections often involve crashes between two vehicles traveling perpendicularly to each other, they are common sites for side-impact crashes.
- Stop lights: Although stoplights do a good job of regulating traffic at intersections, they can also cause problems. Rear-end collisions are common at stoplights because many drivers fail to stop in time for a vehicle in front of them that is sitting at a stoplight. If this rear-end accident is forceful enough, it can cause a chain reaction of other rear-end accidents among the other cars lined up at the light.
- Two-lane roads with heavy traffic: Roads in non-residential areas that have moderate to high speed limits are prime places for head-on collisions, especially if the road is in a heavy traffic area. When there is only one lane traveling in each direction, there is little margin of error if a vehicle drifts over the center line into the oncoming lane. Head-on accidents can also occur when one vehicle tries to pass another vehicle on a two-lane road and hits oncoming cars.
- Parking lots: Not many serious accidents occur in parking lots, but they are prime locations for fender-benders because there are few or no traffic rules that control parking lot driving behavior. This is particularly true if the parking lot is busy. Pedestrian accidents are also common in parking lots because they tend to appear oftentimes without warning.
Should You Hire a Personal Injury Attorney After a Lyft Accident?
If you’re reading this, it probably means that you were involved in a Lyft accident recently and are looking for advice. The general rule of thumb with hiring an attorney after a car accident is that, the more severe or complicated the accident, the greater the need for an attorney. So if your accident was simple or if you suffered only minor injuries, you will probably be able to work out the details of your accident with Lyft. However, if the accident was more serious, you might want to consider professional legal counsel.
Because Lyft and their lawyers have the knowledge and resources to reduce compensation and even deny your claims, hiring a personal injury attorney is a good idea in situations where:
- One or more parties suffered severe injuries
- Someone died in the accident
- There is a dispute over who was at fault for the accident
- The accident involved multiple vehicles
- The accident occurred in a state in which you do not reside
- Lyft is being difficult to work with
If your accident involved any of the above situations, then hiring an attorney might be a good idea.
Contact a Lyft Car Accident Law attorney today
Dealing with ridesharing companies like Uber and Lyft can be tricky since it is in their best interest to deny their driver’s liability and attempt to discourage your claim. If you are having trouble with any ridesharing company, call an Lyft accident attorney today at (305) 964-8806 or contact us online.